Meet the Delhi Man who built 2.5 Lakh Homes to Birds
Homes to birds – The chirping and fluttering sounds of a bird’s wings were once one of the first things you heard when you awoke. However, as a result of fast modernization, these birds’ native habitat, and hence their population, has begun to dwindle.
Rakesh Khatri, a Delhi resident, was troubled by this. “The continual chirping of birds was something I missed. When I was small, my elders would tell us not to turn on the fans because birds had nested. In an interview with ANI, he said, “Not only on fans, but also in lights or any corners.”
Birds are no longer allowed to build nests in people’s homes. There are no cracks in the walls, and when birds attempt to nest, they are shooed away since they will cause a mess. Plants, trees, and bushes are no longer present. What location will the birds use to build their nest?
Homes to birds
Rakesh grew up caring for these winged creatures, and as their numbers began to dwindle, he took action. He started building the nests himself and has now built over 2.5 lakh bird nests. He is now known around the world as the Nest Man of India.
Rakesh’s mission to build bird shelters was not easy. Making nests was his first try, and he began with coconut shells. However, no birds came to make their home, so this plan failed. Rather than giving up, Rakesh proceeded to explore with different bird-friendly materials.
After a few months of trial and error, he finally settled on bamboo sticks, jute thread, and coconut husk. Several sparrows began flocking to 20 nests in his Ashok Vihar neighbourhood within a few days.
The nests were put in areas where human movement would not disturb them. Aside from that, Rakesh would make sure to check on them from time to time to ensure the nests and birds were safe.
Delhi Man’s love for birds
Rakesh’s friends and neighbours were made aware of the project. When they heard chirping birds, they returned to their area to make nests and wait for the hatchlings to be ready to fly. Rakesh claims that following that, he taught others how to build and care for nests.
He went on to form the Eco Roots Foundation in 2012, with the goal of raising awareness about the issue. Small projects have been undertaken by the group, such as the construction of tree canopies in East Delhi RWAs, the installation of recycled e-waste bins in residential areas, and the establishment of herbal nurseries in school complexes.
The group also looked into the importance of influencing the world’s future – children. Rakesh conducts various programmes in both online and offline formats for the Eco Roots Foundation, which teaches children and youth to care for their environment.
He has taught over 10,000 children how to build and manage nests. Over 2.5 lakh nests have been installed across the country by him. He has received a Limca Book of Records award, a National Award for Outstanding Efforts in Science and Technology, and a Dr. KK’s HCFI award in recognition of his efforts.
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